Before you attempt to clean up that overflowing toilet, slow down. You may be dealing with contamination, and that’s when you need to call a water damage restoration specialist.
Contaminated water or mould removal process can cause health issues including sore throat, headache, coughing, and skin rashes. If you live in an area prone to flooding, check your homeowner’s insurance carefully to ensure it includes coverage.
There are many threats homeowners face every day, including water damage. Restoranation can help you repair damage done by leaky faucets, flooding toilets, or a sewage break. While it may be tempting to clean up the problem on your own, certain categories of damage can be extremely dangerous and require a professional for your own health and safety. There are three main categories that most problems fall under.
Basic problems that occur occasionally in most households, such as leaks, overflows, and unwanted moisture fall into this category. In most of these cases, professional water damage restoration is not needed if the problem is caught early enough. The water is clean, so there is no fear of contamination and homeowners can often go the do-it-yourself route. If there is a problem with the plumbing, a professional should be hired for inspection, as there could be more hidden damage throughout the home. Any water should be cleaned up quickly and the area should be allowed to dry out thoroughly to prevent mildew from developing.
Water that is potentially contaminated falls into this category and is sometimes called “grey water” (although it may appear clean). In homes, an overflowing toilet that contained urine would be considered category 2, and while it should be approached with caution. Sump pump defects and leaks from washing machines will also fall into this group. If there is a considerable amount of waste involved or the incident has affected a large area, a water damage restoration expert can assist with cleaning and sanitizing the area, as well as getting into difficult to reach areas to ensure the problem is fully resolved.
The most dangerous type of contamination is “black water.” This will occur after flooding or a large overflow that is left to fester for a few days. Sewage and other severely contaminated wastes would fall into this category as well. The presence of bacteria and fungi can affect the health of residents and can permanently damage personal belongings. And although the title infers the water should be colored, just as with category 2 it can appear to be clear as well. A regulated, professional water damage restoration company should be called for help. Even with the assistance of professionals, many belongings and furniture will likely have to be destroyed due to contamination.
Not all signs of damage are immediately evident but look for discoloration of surfaces, presence of mould, carpeting or other fabrics that feel inexplicably moist, and dripping noises. Many companies will exclude natural disasters that are common to the area due to the high risk involved. Homeowners can purchase supplemental insurance to help cover this potential threat or may be able to receive help under government assistance programs.